Victor Staaf Photographer

Smoking Mirror

“Every hundred feet the world changes”
― Roberto Bolaño, 2666

When I first arrived in Mexico City I wanted to stay forever. It was perfect. A colossal city up in the mountains with a dodgy reputation and a history of bloody battles. I was so excited. I had to see everything. So I started walking, area by area, one street up and another down. I emerged myself with the city. I was ashamed of my curiosity. I pretended I was a local. I made myself believed that I belonged there just as much as anybody else. But the reality was different. I spoke no Spanish. I was a head taller and blond. I was the sore thumb.

Regardless, I could not stop walking. My mission went on. Drifting from area to area. I approached people with my few sentences I've memorized. But words were useless. This was a visual experience.

The more time I spent exploring the city, the magnitude of this project steadily increased. The more I saw the more I wanted to see and the more I wanted to see how it will change. Although, I can't stay in the city, drifting around forever, there is no end in sight. This project will likely change its title, artistic direction, format, technique, etc. but I don't believe it will ever come to an end.

'Smoking Mirror' is a ongoing project set in Mexico City started in 2014 that will probably go on for a very long time.

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